White House: Putin Skipping G8 Summit is Not Obama Snub

Posted May 10th, 2012 at 4:25 pm (UTC-5)
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The White House says it is not disappointed that Russian President Vladimir Putin is skipping next week's G8 summit at the Camp David presidential retreat north of Washington.

A spokesman Thursday said Mr. Putin's decision is not a snub. The spokesman said U.S. officials understand President Putin's explanation that he has a responsibility to remain in Moscow to finalize Cabinet appointments to his new government. Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev will go to Camp David in Mr. Putin's place.

Mr. Putin agreed to meet with President Obama during the G20 summit next month in Mexico.

The two presidents talked by telephone Wednesday. The White House says they reviewed the achievements of the last three years and their mutual commitment to strengthen the U.S.-Russian partnership.

President Putin was sworn in Monday for his third term as Russian president, swapping jobs with Mr. Medvedev.